North Korea is building new infrastructure connecting to the Mount Baekdu Songun Youth Power Station, indicating some parts of the long-gestating project may be nearing completion, according to a report on Korean Central Television (KCTV) made available today.
The video footage shows ongoing construction and numerous completed pylons.
“As you know, we are creating power lines from Baekdu to Samjiyon,” Ri Nam Hong, Deputy Manager at the Ministry of Power Industry said in the KCTV report.
The new infrastructure could mean work is being finalized on at least some the plant, which has been under construction for 20 years.
The report is consistent with an article published by Pyongyang’s AP bureau chief Eric Talmadge, which claimed the Mount Paektu Songun Youth Power Station units No. 1 and No. 2 would be completed by the 70th anniversary of the Korean Workers’ Party this year.
North Korea struggles with power generation, and has a limited electricity transmission grid. Even the country’s capital suffers from widespread blackouts.
It is unclear where the newly generated electricity from the Songun Youth Power Plant will be used, though it will likely remain in the local area.
“I think that this project has been going on to provide electricity to Baekdu in order to promote the tourism projects in Baekdu,” Lee Seok-gi at the Korea Institute for Industrial Economics and Trade told NK News.
North Korea’s primary power sources are hydro-electricity and coal. According to local media, there are numerous large and small scale hydro power projects under construction in North Korea.
Recent reports have also indicated an upswing in the presence of solar power in the DPRK, with many private homes, street lighting and smaller government institutions installing solar panels.
Additional reporting by Ina Yoon
Feature image: KCTV
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